Branding Your App for Publication

Ready to publish your app to the App Store and Google Play? Congratulations! Here’s our rundown of all you need to know when branding your app for publication.

In UK and US markets, professionals in the events industry can expect that a majority of their prospective visitors use a smartphone; therefore your festival visitors will expect to be able to access information about your event via mobile. This has resulted in a huge increase in native apps for all sorts of events, from conferences to festivals, in every price bracket from thousands of dollars to absolutely free. Whichever development and pricing option is right for you, the work doesn’t end with putting together a great app; the next step is ensuring your visitors will be able to find and will want to download it. These seven considerations are the top ways to optimise your app’s presence and drive visitor adoption.

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What’s in a name?
Naming your app is one of the most important considerations you can make. App discoverability is still an issue, in particular in the Apple App Store, as their search capabilities rely on limited information. Choosing a name of ten characters or fewer that is easy to spell will make finding your app simple and keep it memorable. Avoid names similar to existing apps; you want your app to be distinct and for your visitors search results to be uncluttered.

Description Perfection
Your app overview, or description, is not simply a summary of your app; it is your biggest opportunity to pitch your app to potential users. Often with event apps, a potential user has clicked a website link or searched a name to reach your app download page, therefore the overview is where you will convince them your app deserves space on their device. It should be concise, yet informative, and engaging throughout. You should be fully aware of the features visitors want from a mobile app and of how your product meets these needs. Choose a tone appropriate to your organisation and use terminology your visitors will understand and appreciate.

Choosing the appropriate category for your app is vital. While apps for a specific event attract more people through direct links and searches, smartphone users also browse by category. For both the App Store and Google play, you are required to choose a primary and secondary category for your app. Ensuring your app shows up where your visitors expect it will boost adoption rates. The apps we have previously developed have usually been included in the Books/Reference category on Google Play and the Apple Store.

Keywording is potentially the most difficult yet rewarding part of branding your app. Keywords are generally limited to 100 characters and will determine how your app displays in search results. Avoid using duplicate words in plural, or the name of the categories you have assigned your app to. Consider the words your potential app users are likely to choose when searching; you could even use a web analytics tool to generate a word cloud of most mentioned or searched words associated with your event or brand.

A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words
Designing an eye-catching icon for your app is crucial, as it will appear on your user’s device, and appear all over your online presence. You should use something that fits your existing branding; however logos designed for print or website use
are often too large and detailed to translate well to being an app icon. Choosing an appropriate colour and simple shape theme and applying this across your branding will ensure your app icon is recognisable. Consider the variety of backgrounds your app icon could be displayed on and design for all eventualities; you cannot easily predict what users will choose as their device background.

Loading Screen
Waiting for content to load has to be at the top of any mobile users list of small annoyances. Apps use a launch image to display on screen during the loading process; you should choose an image that downplays this experience rather than highlighting it. Keep it simple with an image that fits your branding and app content. The importance of this will depend largely on the size of your application and whether much of the content relies on a data connection to display.

The most important things to bear in mind when preparing your app for publication are recognisability and searchability. Optimising your keywords and choosing a great name will ensure your visitors can find your app, while choosing a great icon and including relevant screenshots will ensure your app’s place on your visitor’s device. Need a more data driven approach to encourage app downloads? Check out Data Driven Tactics to Increase Mobile Event Apps Adoption

Have we missed something? Post your suggestions or queries in the comments.